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Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

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Manchester, UK
Level Contributor
494 posts
66 reviews
Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

And that's my question - I haven't managed to find such a thing along the main shopping streets - is there one in one of the side streets that I may have missed? (Can't believe a town like this doesn't have one!)

11 replies to this topic
United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3,389 posts
55 reviews
1. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

Sadly not! The best you are likely to get is Fullers Butchers in Nelson Road, or the cheese counter at Waitrose.

Have you tried Farmers' Markets for local cheeses? Having moved to Kent 26 years ago from Cheshire, I was a bit surprised that there didn't seem to be any real tradition of town markets, as there is in the North of England. Stockport and Ashton Under Lyne both have superb markets with local cheeses, pies, meats and so much more.

We often buy " regional" cheeses from either Waitrose or ASDA, but it's not the same as buying from the stallholder who has made the cheese themselves.

Albufeira, Portugal
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for Algarve, Faro
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2. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

There are people selling cheese at the local markets for sure, not necessarily which they have made themselves though. Too many rules and regulations I suppose.

Tunbridge Wells has a monthly farmer's market by the town hall. Tonbridge has a Saturday morning market by the railway station, where I used to buy cheese from a stall there. But mondial is right, there are very few markets now. Some of the smaller towns have specialist shops but, like in most areas, everyone goes to the out of town superstores for their shopping.

United Kingdom
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3. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

Cubsir

The DEFRA rules for certified and registered Farmers' Markets indicate that the produce sold must have been grown, reared or produced by the stallholder or his family within the local area.

As for too many rules and regulations, I couldn't agree more, and I think we should tell Brussels where to get off!

To the OP, .. Have a look in Stockport Market for the Produce Hall, or Hen Market as it used to be known. Some superb local cheeses sold there on market days, which I think are still Tuesday, Friday and Saturday. It's a bit stone fronted building which overlooks the wonderful glass and cast iron market hall, a listd building and well worth a look inside too.

Edited: 5:07 am, September 22, 2013
Manchester, UK
Level Contributor
494 posts
66 reviews
4. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

Yes, I'm very familiar with Stockport (and Ashton-under-Lyne) market - I live in Stockport, but am also spending a lot of time in the Tunbridge Wells area. Hmmm - maybe there's a business opportunity here; surely there are enough cheeseoholics in and around TW to support a decent cheese shop? Farmers' markets are always worth supporting, and I'm all for local produce, but sometimes you just yearn for a lovely wedge of melting Brie de Meaux or a beautiful piece of tangy Saint-Agur, and I'd love to be able to get some down here. Oh for another branch of the wonderful Cheese Hamlet in Didsbury!

United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3,389 posts
55 reviews
5. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

Hello, Fawlty!

MAybe if you fancy a day out you could try the Phillipe Olivier cheese shop in Boulogne, where the smell of the cheeses is so strong that they light candles in the shop to counteract it. Some of their " cheeses" look to me like portions of furry dog sh1t in little paper cases but they seem to sell well, and oh boy, the prices. If the smell of the cheese doesn't make your eyes water, the prices will!

Happy hunting!

Manchester, UK
Level Contributor
494 posts
66 reviews
6. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

Hi Mondial - yes, I don't need much of an excuse to hop over to France, though it's a costly way of satisfying my regular cheese cravings...

United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3,389 posts
55 reviews
7. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

Why not stock up, portion it and eat what you need immediately, and then freeze the rest. Most cheeses, even some soft ones , will freeze reasonably well as long as you wrap it in grease proof paper first, then wrap tightly in tin foil and freeze down quickly.

Just a thought...

Kind regards

Mondial

United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3,389 posts
55 reviews
8. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

Me again!

Just spotted La Cage a Fromage in Hove on South Coast. Probably doable by train from T Wells if you change at Redhill?

Tonbridge, United...
Level Contributor
826 posts
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9. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

There used to be a brilliant one in West Malling, but I think it has gone now sadly.

There are some good producers at the monthly farmers market in Tonbridge. Shipbourne farmers market is weekly on Thursday mornings and is very good.

Edited: 4:47 pm, September 22, 2013
East Sussex, United...
Destination Expert
for West Sussex, East Sussex
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4,418 posts
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10. Re: Is there a really good cheese shop in Tunbridge Wells?

Proper cheese shop in Horsham now, head south to Sussex for farmers markets if a Kent doesn't satisfy. Heathfield is less than 15 miles away but has a good (if small) farmers market on a Saturday morning. Lewes is further but bigger.

Mike

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